The coming-of-age comedy-drama ‘CODA’ (which, incidentally, is the acronym for Child of Deaf Adults) and Denis Villeneuve’s sci-fi epic ‘Dune’ emerged as the biggest winners at the just-concluded 94th Academy Awards held at the Dolby Theater here.
‘Dune’ bagged six awards, all in technical categories; ‘CODA’ made Oscar history by winning the awards in all three categories it was nominated in. It also became the first film from a major streaming platform — Apple TV — to bag the prestigious award of ‘Best Picture’, becoming thereby the first official nod from the Academy to the tectonic shift taking place in the entertainment industry because of the rise of OTT platforms in the Covid-19 era.
Jane Campion, staved off competition from the likes of Seven Spielberg and Kenneth Branagh, to win the award for Best Director for her much-admired film, ‘The Power of the Dog’.
‘Dune’ got the better of some serious competition — notably from ‘Shang-Chi’ and ‘Spider-Man’ — bagged Oscars for Best Visual Effects, Best Cinematography, Best Production Design, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score and Best Sound. ‘CODA’ took home the honours for Best Supporting Actor (Troy Kotsur), Best Adapted Screenplay (Sian Heder) and Best Picture of course.
Will Smith, who had earlier slapped comedian Chris Rock across his face over a joke directed at his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, won the honour for Best Lead Actor owing to his performance in ‘King Richard’.
The biographical drama ‘The Eyes of Tammy Faye’ won two awards — Best Lead Actress for Jessica Chastain and Best Makeup and Hairstyling.
The broadcast from Dolby Theater also honoured the history of the art form of films as it brought back the casts of classics such as ‘The Godfather’ and ‘Pulp Fiction’ and celebrated the 60th anniversary of James Bond with a presentation featuring skateboarder Tony Hawk, surfer Kelly Slater and snowboarder Shaun White.
Ariana DeBose was feted with the Best Supporting Actress award for her performance in Steven Spielberg’s ‘West Side Story’. Best Animated Feature Film went to Disney’s ‘Encanto’. The Japanese film ‘Drive My Car’, an international awards circuit favourite, clinched the title for ‘Best International Film’.
Jenny Beavan was conferred with Best Costume Design for ‘Cruella’, a film she initially almost refused to work on. Kenneth Branagh walked away with ‘Best Original Screenplay’ for his writing in the coming-of-age drama, ‘Belfast’.
Other winners included ‘Summer of Soul’, which won Best Documentary Feature; ‘No Time To Die’ (Best Original Song) for the title track by Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell; ‘The Queen of Basketball’ (Best Documentary Short Subject); ‘The Windshield Wiper’ (Best Animated Short Film); and ‘The Long Goodbye’ (Best Live Action Short Film).